Hello and thanks to everyone who contributed to the amazing discussion we had on the subject of friendship. Your comments have made that the 2nd most popular post ever on this blog!
This week, we’ve got Jim Kukral, internet guru and self-published author of ‘No Publisher Needed: Crowdfunding your book. How I raised over $30k in 30 days’ to share his thoughts on how he raised enough financial support via crowdsourcing to fund his book project.Jim Kukral’s book on Crowdfunding
Crowdfunding is a new concept to me, but one that is gaining popularity among authors and other creatives as traditional publishing contracts are increasingly difficult to come by and less attractive to authors than they once were. Here is Jim’s post. I hope you’ll share your thoughts at the end of it, and also your experiences, if you’ve ever tried crowdfunding. Were you successful at it?
What The Heck Is Crowdsourcing?
‘I could go and pull the official definition from the Wikipedia right now, but instead let me give you my non-researched opinion.
Crowdsourcing is when you use the power of people—the crowd—to accomplish a goal, like raising money, or organizing to get a better deal on a product or service.
Crowdsourcing is tapping into the massive power of a “crowd” of people and using their collective power to get something done.
Here’s the Wikipedia definition, just for perspective: “Crowdsourcing is the act of sourcing tasks traditionally performed by specific individuals to an undefined large group of people or community (crowd) through an open call.”
The concept of using the power of a crowd isn’t really that new. Just ask Frankenstein or Count Dracula about their experiences with an organized crowd with pitchforks and crosses and torches. “Crowd, BAD!!!”
Take it easy, Frank.
Protesters have used the power of the crowd to accomplish many great things over time. Right now as I write there are hundreds of thousands of people squatting around the USA in the Occupy Wall Street movement. Regardless of where you sit with their overall message, you cannot disqualify that their collective approach has not gotten the attention they were looking for. Governments have been overthrown using the power of a crowd. Crowds cause change, and change is good.
No, crowdsourcing is not new. The Web simply made it more powerful because of the ability for people to organize and band together from their den offices in their underwear. What did you have to do to organize a crowd before the Internet? You’d maybe create a flier and post it up on telephone poles in your neighborhood. Then you’d stand on a soapbox and try to get the attention of people walking by. Or you’d be the annoying guy handing out fliers in front of your local supermarket, until the cops came and hauled you away.
Then maybe you’d convince a local newspaper to print a blurb about a rally you were having, and maybe people would read the newspaper and come. Then when everyone got there, you’d have to re-explain your message and mission, and re-educate the crowd. Then you’d have to motivate them and let them learn about you. Then maybe they’d go home and tell so more people, and so on….
Whew… a lot of work. And not that effective in the grand scheme of things. It worked, but it was hard to get it to work fast.
Yes, the crowd’s power before the Web was limited. But now—wow! You could have an idea like I did and use the power of the Internet to spread that idea and organize that idea in minutes! Now that’s true power. Now that’s true change.’
Thanks to Jim for sharing his thoughts on the subject of crowdfunding/crowdsourcing. One of my readers directed me to this link, where you’ll find invaluable info about crowdfunding. Please check it out if you’re interested, and please do share your thoughts if you’ve been involved in a crowdfunding project.
We’d love to hear about your experiences. Then join us back here the week of May 28th, when we’ll have our next new post. Ciao for now!